A popular fishing port and seaside resort village on the Northumbrian coast, Seahouses is a lovely spot on a coastline of breathtaking beauty. Daily sailings leave from Seahouses harbour to visit the nearby nature reserve and seabird sanctuary on the Farne Islands. Some boat trips allow visitors to land on the islands to explore on foot.

Just two miles up the coast is Bamburgh Castle, and the dramatic ruins of Dunstanburgh Castle are several miles further south.

Seahouses did not exist until 1889 when the harbour was created to boost the local lime and fishing industries. A settlement grew up around the new harbour, and over the past century, Seahouses has become perhaps the most popular coastal resort in Northumberland.

The harbour is crowded with pleasure craft and commercial tour boats taking visitors to the Farne Islands, which can easily be seen offshore.

Farne Boat Trips

The Farnes are home to one of Europe's most important bird sanctuaries, with over 20 species including terns and the ever-popular puffins. There is also a very large resident seal colony.

The present seabird sanctuary can trace its history back to the 7th century, when St Cuthbert was a hermit on the island, Cuthbert created an early form of reserve to protect the ducks of Farne. Today you can visit the remains of a medieval church established on the site of Cuthbert's hermitage.

There are somewhere between 15 and 28 islands comprising Farne; the exact number depends on the height of the tides.

We've taken a boat trip to Farne that allowed us to see the seals close up, and gave us time ashore, where we could visit St Cuthbert's church and walk amid the bird colonies. It truly is a special experience and one I can highly recommend.

There are several boat tour operators, all with booths at the Seahouses harbour, so you can choose a tour length and type that suits your interests; some focus more on the bird and seal viewing, while others are focussed more on the heritage of the islands.

Back on the mainland, you can visit Swallow Fish, who operate the oldest smokehouse in the UK, and The Fisherman's Kitchen, where the catch of the day shares space with fishing memorabilia and historic artefacts.

There is very little of ancient heritage in Seahouses itself; it is geared towards traditional seaside resort entertainment, with family activities like crazy golf and simply enjoying the sandy beaches with a bucket and spade.